07 Dec Choose to Act as Your Best Self

In my bedroom I have a mirror I have had since college. You know, the $10 full-length mirror you have to nail into the wall or back of a door. It isn’t quite funhouse material, but it definitely shows me a bit taller and a bit leaner than I look in any other mirror I use. For a while I considered getting rid of it because, while it makes me look great in almost any outfit, it isn’t quite realistic. It is more like me at my peak, when I am eating all of the right things and spending the right amount of time exercising consistently. This “me” exists several times a year, but it isn’t the every-single-day me.

I was considering getting rid of it, but the truth is, I feel good when I look in that mirror. And what do we do when we feel like our best selves? What are we capable of? We take that important meeting and risk letting our guard down. We have the extra oomph of courage to chat with that cute guy at the coffee shop. We stride into that audition we know we can nail, and we arrive with confidence. I’m not talking about ego, but about believing in what you can do, truly knowing what you are capable of. Having confidence in yourself without needing reassurance from others. That is how I feel on my best days.

I’m learning that I can choose to see my best self. Just as headshots are not glamour shots, but rather a depiction of me on my best day, I can choose to see myself that way. Or at least act like I am having one of those good days.

I have a dear friend who is one of the most beautiful women I have ever met. Almost every time I’m in her presence, I find myself mesmerized by this glowing, stunning woman standing before me. She has such a zest for life, she wears the most playful colors, and she is just so uniquely and completely feminine. It is incredible. Yet I often catch her putting herself down, commenting on her age, pointing out flaws in her face, in her aging body… things I never once noticed. All I can see is her beauty. I see her best self.

Do her comments take away from how I see her? A little bit. I can’t help but think how silly it is to bring up things like aging. It is something that we all go through. She is aging incredibly gracefully, and yet she feels the need to point it out like it is a bad thing. She doesn’t see what I see — a woman with many years left, full of life and adventure, fearlessly embarking on new experiences.

We are our own harshest critics. But what if we saw our best selves whenever we looked in the mirror? How much more could we accomplish if we chose to show our most radiant, confident selves to the world?

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